Florida Illegal Gambling Raid Leads to Three Dozen Charges Against Arcade Owner
Posted on: July 7, 2022, 02:34h.
Last updated on: July 7, 2022, 12:53h.
The man who once ran a Boynton Beach, Fla. arcade has been charged with 32 counts of unlawful possession of slot machines. He was booked this week following a search in June of the Crowne Arcade.
Antonio Magnone, 35, whose permanent address is Weirton, W.V. was apprehended recently in Ohio. He was extradited to Florida and was held in the Palm Beach County Jail before an appearance this week in local court.
Bond was set at $15,000. The suspect also faces charges of money laundering, keeping a gambling house, and being an agent or employee of a gambling house.
The arrest follows an investigation spanning several months. It started last November, when the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office got a tip there could be illegal gambling taking place in the arcade, WPTV, a Florida TV station, reported.
When visiting the business, sheriff’s investigators spotted more than 30 “Las Vegas style video slot machines” inside, arrest documents revealed. The devices paid out cash prizes to winning players, WPTV said.
Also, when a player bet $10, the arcade put another $10 of house money into the slot machine, authorities said. Players could win as much as $10,000 in the arcade, WPTV said.
Two Others Charged
The latest raid on the arcade took place on June 6. It was over a year ago, on March 18, 2021, the same arcade was raided by Broward County, Fla. detectives. The search led to the arrest of a man identified as Magnone’s brother, Vincenzo Magnone, 38.
Among the charges against him were bookmaking and keeping a gambling house, the report said. Vincenzo Magnone has pled guilty in the case. He was sentenced to five years of probation, the BocaPost.com, a Florida online news site, reported.
After his brother’s arrest, Antonio Magnone became responsible for the arcade’s management, authorities said. On June 8, the brothers sold the arcade to an entity called Anjaneya Investments for $450,000, WPTV said. The arcade was renamed Game X Arcade last month.
A woman identified as the arcade’s business manager, Marquita Margadonna, 66, was also charged after the June 6 search of the arcade. Her charges include unlawful possession of a slot machine, money laundering, keeping a gambling house, and being an agent or employee of a gambling house, WPTV said.
She has posted bond. Her court case is pending.
Based on their investigation, authorities estimate the slot machines at the arcade are worth about $200,000.
Eight Gambling Raids
In an unrelated case, last December deputies raided eight allegedly illegal gaming properties in Florida’s Seminole County. Some 18 suspects were charged.
Charges include racketeering, keeping a house of gaming, delivering gaming machines, and running an illegal lottery. The illegal operations were shut down.
The casinos were operating in Altamonte Springs, Sanford, Casselberry, and in unincorporated Seminole County. Many of the dens were set up in strip plazas and had no distinguishing signs, or were disguised as other business.
In one case, a den was disguised as a pawn shop. Another was marked as a billiard hall.